You are here

$20 Trick

How to Get an Upgrade in Las Vegas

Hotels in Vegas have rooms which range from the very basic to luxury suites. In between you get rooms great views (or looking out to a car park), suites and various other benefits in the more expensive rooms. This article covers a well-known way to get an upgrade when you check-in, with the help of a $20 note.

First, the practical steps for using the $20 are outlined. Then, some other ways of getting an upgrade to your room are covered. Next you’ll find a list of some of the hotel casino resorts where you might want to give the $20 trick a try.

How to Execute the $20 Trick

When you try this trick, you are basically offering a bribe to the hotel receptionist to give you a free upgrade. This is fine, and millions of people have already done exactly this. What you  do need to consider is that you should not embarrass the reception staff by making this too obvious, or doing it when there are more than one member of staff dealing with you at that point.

You should hand over your passport, credit card and any booking papers you have with a $20 note peeking out. This should be clear and obvious to the staff, yet not blatant enough to embarrass them. What you will then do is ask whether an upgrade would be possible, preferably with a smile.

If the receptionist is willing, and if a room is available, then you might well find yourself upgraded. Again, save the high fives and whoops until you are safely in your room, this could embarrass the staff involves and make it less likely that they will do the same favor in the future. This is a favor, and the staff are under no obligation to upgrade you. If you are told that this is not possible on this occasion, then thank them for checking and enjoy your trip.

Other Ways to Get an Upgrade

The main other person who can get your room upgraded is the casino host. This person looks after seeing that players enjoy their stay in the casino. They are primarily focused on the high rollers, though regular gamblers are also on their radar. The idea with the casino host is to build a relationship, let them know that you are a regular player in their casino, and then wait for them to offer you an upgrade.

Alternatively, you could help yourself get an upgrade on your next visit by registering for a player card and making sure you track your play on this. If you hand your card to the dealer before you sit down, your play will accumulate points. When you register for the card, you’ll give them your mailing address and / or e-mail. You will find plenty of special offers coming your way after this. It is usually just a case of the right deal at the right time to see you in a luxury room for your next visit.

The final way is to do some serious price comparison shopping before you book. With so many websites offering discounts, you may be able to find a superior room or a suite for the same price as your regular room on one of them. Even if no upgrade options are good enough value for you, it may be that you save some money on your regular room which you can use to ensure you have a good time.

Which Resorts to Try The $20 Trick At?

I would avoid using this trick at exclusive hotels and resorts, for example the Cromwell’s new boutique hotel. Though there is nothing to stop you trying it at any of the major resort casinos, either on the Strip or Downtown.

Here is a selection of hotels you might want to try getting an upgrade at.

The Wynn or Encore
These linked hotels are owned by Steve Wynn and sit at the northern end of the Strip opposite the Fashion Show mall. An upgrade here could be the difference between a room which looks right down the length of the Strip, compared to one which overlooks the golf-course.

The Mirage
Opposite to the Venetian you will find one of the first large scale resorts, the Mirage has 3 wings, each will a better side and a not so good view. The non-view rooms are perfectly comfortable, though I would prefer one which overlooked the Strip, with a great view of Harrah’s and the Flamingo opposite. The North facing rooms see Treasure Island, the Wynn and various views of the northern off-strip casino resorts.

The Mandalay Bay
Another casino with two very different views, this time at the southern end of the Strip. Here you want to have a North facing room, this will ensure that you can see the Bellagio and the Strip looking up from the south.